N.Y. Rep. Chris Lee resigns after Craigslist personals scandal
February 9th, 2011
06:02 PM ET
3 years ago

N.Y. Rep. Chris Lee resigns after Craigslist personals scandal

Washington (CNN) - Republican Rep. Christopher Lee of New York resigned his House seat Wednesday following a report that the married congressman had tried to meet a woman on Craigslist.

"It has been a tremendous honor to serve the people of Western New York," said a statement by Lee posted on his website. "I regret the harm that my actions have caused my family, my staff and my constituents. I deeply and sincerely apologize to them all. I have made profound mistakes and I promise to work as hard as I can to seek their forgiveness."

The statement said that "the challenges we face in Western New York and across the country are too serious for me to allow this distraction to continue, and so I am announcing that I have resigned my seat in Congress effective immediately."

Just before 6 p.m., an announcement read on the House floor said Lee had resigned as of 5 p.m. Wednesday and the number of the House members decreased by one from 435 to 434.

Lee, who is married and has a son, resigned after the website Gawker published an item reporting he corresponded with a woman who posted a Craigslist ad and allegedly sent her a bare-chested photo of himself.

The speed of Lee's resignation indicated a culture of zero tolerance by House Republicans for potentially controversial behavior so soon after winning control of the chamber for the first time since 2007.

Lee was first elected to Congress in 2008 from New York's 26th district in the western part of the state, which includes suburbs of both Buffalo and Rochester. He won re-election last November.


Filed under: Congress
soundoff (299 Responses)
  1. dieselbug

    Yet another hypocrite Republican – whatever happened to "Family Values"?

    February 9, 2011 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  2. jaks

    Well at least he wasn't trying to hook up with another man, which is usually what happens when a GOP is busted trying to cheat on his wife. Family values.

    February 9, 2011 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  3. Master_Kush

    CNN, you didnt have to do the Fox thing and put the photo... Leave that to the viewer and a search engine... Bad taste dudes....

    February 9, 2011 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  4. Christina Moorshead

    This story would be much better WITHOUT the picture.

    Christina Moorshead

    February 9, 2011 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  5. Anthony

    How bout dem conserative values?

    February 9, 2011 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  6. Freddy

    Let's hear it for GOP family values.

    February 9, 2011 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  7. BUSTED

    Trying to meet women online, shame on you.

    February 9, 2011 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  8. Switchemz

    From the organization that brought you Family Values®…

    As a liberal, I'm performing my sworn duty to laugh at the GOP's extra-hilarious take on hypocrisy…honestly, though, I could give 2 sh*ts about his personal life if he's a competent leader.

    February 9, 2011 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  9. Superhiro

    LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL. C'mon man. COME ON. How could he think this wouldn't come back to bite him?

    February 9, 2011 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  10. tonyb

    who would have thought....good thing he's working hard to earn his families forgiveness. By any chance is he a family values republican?

    February 9, 2011 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  11. Palin: Like Coulter ... Minus the Manparts

    The hypocrisy of the right-wing nutjobs is dizzying. No, it's not a matter of pointing fingers, it's just that they always act all high and mighty and morally superior to the rest of the human race (usually Democrats). Family values, indeed! You just can't make this stuff up. Sanctimony thy name name has a stain called the Republican Partee Boys!

    February 9, 2011 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  12. Mark Zuckerberg

    Looks like a Myspace pic!

    February 9, 2011 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  13. Mongcon

    What is it with the GOP that they can't keep it in their pants? Sen. Ensign... do the right thing and follow Mr. Lee out the door.

    February 9, 2011 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  14. Christy in Texas

    Nice hand gesture and full facial shot. He seriously wanted to be caught... seriously.

    February 9, 2011 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  15. Funnypeople

    You have got to be kidding me.....what was he thinking. By the way he looks like Dana Carvey in the photo on the right...PUMP YOU UP! lol

    February 9, 2011 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  16. BigDR

    I wish John Edwards would do the right thing.

    February 9, 2011 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  17. Susanne

    He did this on Craigslist? I would not call that being discreet. I assume he wanted to be caught.

    February 9, 2011 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  18. fred

    So much for the sanctity of marriage. Good looking guy...should have thought about cropping of the head shot though.

    February 9, 2011 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  19. Emerald Laughter

    The Party of Family Values strikes again.

    February 9, 2011 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  20. mcore

    Oh wow. Another member of the "morality" party swallowed by his own repressed demons. This is getting to be too predictable.

    February 9, 2011 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  21. Sally Hawkins

    Holy Crap, what an idiot.

    February 9, 2011 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  22. Stephen in Bedford, TX

    This gets funnier as the story progesses. How embarrassing for this schmuck. I mean, look at that picture he posted of himself. I guess he thought it was a good idea because Vladimir Putin had his picture taken of himself. At least Putin didn't post it on craigslist.

    February 9, 2011 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  23. jenkoosh

    Whatever. I'm a Democrat, but really don't care about the man's personal life.

    February 9, 2011 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  24. Chaaih

    Wow, they just kdeep getting dumber. His family must be so proud and his constituents,,, well, they may want to request an in vestigation to see if their taxpayer mnonies were used to fund his ads on Craigslist and on hsi possible dalliances. Hey, why not spring for an STD test, too!

    February 9, 2011 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  25. yeah

    In situations like this I would have to say he wanted to get caught. The morality of people in office should not come as a surprise. These are the people that are in government who are making decisions on your behalf. wake up people.

    February 9, 2011 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12